CAY HILL - FC Soualiga Women's Soccer Team hosted its 2nd PJIA International Women’s Soccer Tournament during the weekend of October 25th and 26th, with the hosting team FC Soualiga winning both of the matches it competed in (5-2 and 7-3).
This time around it proved a little bit more difficult to get teams over to the island as opposed to 2013’s tournament with 6- a side games where St. Barths, Curacao and Trinidad participated along two FC Soualiga teams. This year Raoul Illidge allowed for official 11- a side games. This however proved difficult for other regional teams as airfare for regional flights are quite expensive, especially when an entire team, including coaches, need to travel. The fact that chikungunya has been circulating in the region has also made matters worse, as team Trinidad had to cancel a day before the opening match due to contracting the virus.
Considering that FIFA has deemed this year ‘the year of women in soccer’, world-wide more investment should be made in having women participate in the sport, it is regrettable that many teams, some affiliated with FIFA, have not yet been able to represent themselves internationally.
However, FC Soualiga was still very pleased with the outcome of this year’s PJIA International Women’s Soccer Tournament. They were applauded for their professionalism and great organizational skills, as well as everyone being impressed by the improvement the team has shown in such a short time span. The team, only being in existence since April 2013, has proven it is a force to be reckoned with.
FC Soualiga walked away with the first place prize, while their main competitor, ‘Association Sportive de Gustavia’ from St. Barth's came in second. Other personal prizes such as the best defender prize went to Cindy Havinga, Daphne Wittenberg was named best goalie and the most valuable player prize went to Kandice Franklyn, as well as winning the prize for most goals scored.
FC Soualiga would like to thank all their amazing sponsors for making this year’s tournament another success. FC Soualiga would especially like to acknowledge its corporate sponsor Princess Juliana International Airport, and Divi Little Bay Beach Resort for always supporting the team. Without them and the sponsors Windward Islands Bank, GEBE, Sint Maarten Building Supplies, Majula Corp., Travel Planners, Holland House Beach Hotel, and Heavenly Water, the tournament would not have been as successful as it was.
Special thanks also goes out to Coach David Forsythe, Rita Aikman and Ruthlyn Hooi from the St. Maarten Soccer Educational Foundation, the Red Cross Foundation, Robenson Gassant for his graphic design expertise, Mr. York from Ocean Island NV, and the Foundation Upkeep Sports Facilities for always supporting FC Soualiga in all its endeavors.